Asthma UK community forum

Post exercise tightness

Hi everyone,

A few months ago I had a period of far-better-than-normal running ability, and got really excited. All of a sudden I was running further distances relatively symptom free. Unfortunately that has tapered off now, but I'm still trying to push myself to run. I used to get symptoms when I ran, but now I get more bothered by them afterwards, whilst feeling OK when actually running. For the rest of the day after running I'll have a really tight chest and feel very tired, but I don't cough (which is normally a big symptom). Ventolin doesn't help all that much - I'll still have symptoms for the rest of the day.

The enthusiasm that my weird running spurt inspired me with is fading fast, because every time I go running the rest of the day is pretty much a write off. Oddly enough, before my running spurt, my bigger problem was symptoms during exercise, symptoms after didn't bother me as much as they do now.

I'm really rubbish at running - my jogging pace is barely above my walking pace, so I can't really slow down!!

Anyone got any advice? I'd really like to enjoy it, and see some improvement (which apart from the weird spurt, I've never ever seen, despite 6 years of regular jogs!)

Cheers, C

6 Replies

no real answer but do you take ventolin half hour or so after stopping. Also a warm down, (gradually slow and walk for a while)

Wonder if it's the temperature change though, coming in from what is at present quite cold windy outside to a warmer house contributing.

Sorry not really any definitive answer


Hi Woody, thanks for your reply. I feel as if I do the obvious things to help, like warm downs and reliever etc, and in cold weather I wear a buff over my mouth. Today I thought I might as well really dose myself up on ventolin to see if that helped, and it did, but I've taken more than a nebs worth (some before, some after), and I've been doing a really good job in the last few months of massively reducing my reliever usage, so I'm not too keen on this solution long term. But I do feel a lot better than yesterday... (My running, by the way, was all over the place with the extra ventolin, I went far too fast near the beginning, and couldn't sort out a steady pace at all!)


I presume your profile is correct and you're still on Montelukast, that is supposed to help with exercise induced asthma, which reading your original post would clearly point to. Some good research from years ago suggested that Intal was good for EIA. Not many use it now as Montelukast and Zafirlukast have replaced it's use but maybe worth having a word with your asthma nurse/GP.

Hope you can find something that works, I know this time last year a 10K run would leave me with a persistent cough for 24-48 hours, montelukast solved that and yesterday did a 20.6K training run, at a pace that would give me a 4hr5min marathon and I still had something left to give if I wanted.

Have that word with GP/Nurse and don't let them fob you off, you shouldn't have the problem your experiencing.


Thanks Woody, I'll look into Intal. Yep, I'm still on montelukast, which helps me massively - when I started taking a few years ago it my running got much better, but then tapered off again, but day to day still does a huge amount. I have quite a lot of stamina when doing sporty things - I can keep going for ages if I'm going slow (I've managed to haul a heavy pack around mountain ranges for days on end a few times), but as soon as I do anything requiring speed or running I'm totally rubbish. Which is odd, as all the boys in my family are/were really good runners (I'm female). I'm impressed with your running!


PS a few months ago I switched from Seretide to Symbicort. This is going really well so far - my reliever usage has plummeted, but does anyone think the switch could have had a negative effect on running? x


could be related to the change from seretide, why the change.. Other thing I wondered is are you running/jogging too often or far and it's not asthma but over exertion causing your muscles to ache. I tend to leave a day between runs, but last year 1 run a week was enough, along with 1 bike ride and 1 swim. I'm like you though, steady pace I'm fine, sprints forget it knacker my lungs out. Did that last year in a race, started at 4min/km pace after 3k had to drop back to normal pace and last 2km of the 9km race were very hard work, learnt my lesson.


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